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Sacha Baron dropped hosting Oscars

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New York (ANI): Oscars producers wanted Sacha Baron Cohen to host the upcoming 82nd Academy Awards show, but Academy turned down the plan. At an interview with NPR's "Fresh Air," Oscars'' producer Adam Shankman said Cohen was the original choice to host the gala when he and co producer Bill Mechanic were sifting through profiles of potential candidates.

The producers thought Cohen"s antics as a swishy fashionista in "Bruno," a crazy Kazakhstan journalist in "Borat," and hip-hop-happy Ali G, made him the perfect choice. However the idea was nixed by the Academy. "The Academy swatted it down," the New York Daily News quoted Shankman, the director of "Hairspray", as saying.

He added: "They thought it was too big of a wild card." The awards night slated for March 7 will be co-hosted by Steve Martin and Alec Baldwin.

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